5 ways to spot a Phishing Site from a Mile Away
Phishing, not to be confused with fishing but is similar to it in a way, is a method of obtaining sensitive information such as account details and credit card details by planting malware in websites, emails, and programs. This malware would then be used to either control your computer remotely or hack into your accounts. In this article, we will show you how to spot them.
1. Spelling and Grammar
Cyber Criminals wouldn’t take the time to double check spelling and grammar on the e-mails or messages they would send, as their goal is to send these out in mass. If ever you encounter an email or message filled with mistakes there is a chance it might be a scam. Some of these emails may also have generic greetings addressed to a group of people. Professional companies like Google or Facebook would usually have editors to check out their messages, and would be quick to correct them should there be any mistakes.
2. Links on emails and messages
Never click on links in suspicious emails or messages instead double check these links. Hover your mouse over it and check if the address that pops-up is the same as the address in the link. If they’re different, then you would most probably be either redirected to a phishing site or it would download malware once you click it. Most of these messages will come in the form of offers like discount coupons at a diner or some beauty product.
3. Threats or Warnings
One of the most famous methods of phishing used by cybercriminals is to put fear into their victim’s minds. Some of the messages and emails they send would have a threat or warning. The most common threats they send out is related to your accounts. They would say that they detected suspicious activity on it or it might get deleted and if you don’t respond there would be consequences. Sometimes they would also ask you to sign an application to prevent the closure of your account or even make you pay a certain amount to rescind their threat. Don’t do any of these as it is their way of getting your personal information and credit card or bank details.
In conjunction with threat or warnings, Phishing messages and emails would have a sense of urgency in them. To add up to your stress, they would make you think that whatever happened requires immediate attention.
5. Requests for personal information
The most common method cybercriminals use to phish out information is by sending out requests. They would either send out messages with generic greetings or mimic a well-known company or brand to trick you into giving out your information. These requests might come in the form of applications or sign-ups.
Always be mindful of the messages you receive on the internet. Stay calm and collected when you receive warnings, instead of replying to the email directly try contacting the customer support of the company or brand that the message might be mimicking. And, we cannot stress this enough, never provide your personal information unless you are sure that whoever you’re dealing with is a trusted company or personnel. We’re working on a series of guides and internet safety tips for our #makeITsafePH series in partnership with Globe so bookmark this page for our weekly feature.
More #makeITsafePH security tips:
- 5 ways to spot a Phishing Site from a Mile Away
- 10 Email Tips to Keep Away from Spam
- How to Manage Internet Use for your Children
- How to Clean your PC from Malware
- 6 Internet Security Tips in The Workplace
- How to Keep Safe when using Public or Free WiFi
- 4 Signs Your Online Accounts May Have Been Compromised